Not a Fine Gentleman
(Rogue Hearts, #5)
By Donna Hatch
Paperback & ebook, 448 Pages
June 18, 2020 by Mirror Lake Press LLC
Lady Margaret secretly yearns for love, but fate has exchanged wedded bliss for a lie. When she is caught hovering over her cheating husband’s dead body, she is instantly doomed to hang for his murder. Without hope for justice, Margaret flees into the night alone.
A cynical Bow Street Constable, Connor Jackson, vows to bring the fugitive Lady Margaret to face the law—but, he doesn’t expect sparks to fly between them. Could the strong yet tender lady truly be a killer?
As more suspects—and even more condemning evidence—surface, the less certain Connor is of his duty. He must choose between his growing feelings for Lady Margaret and the demands of justice. Will the truth tear them apart or set them free to find love?
Itching to begin hunting for the murder suspect, despite her brother’s protestations of her innocence, Connor stood to excuse himself.
“Jackson.” Christian Amesbury looked down at his hands and carefully laced them together. “It’s likely that whoever murdered Hennessey is also after Margaret. It’s the only reasonable explanation for why she hasn’t come to one of us.”
If that were true, Lady Hennessy would be in danger. Connor nodded. “Do you have a portrait of her?”
Amesbury retrieved a miniature from a sideboard table. “This was done just before she got married. It’s a good likeness.”
As Connor took hold of the framed painting, everything inside him went still. A stunning, dark-haired woman with a pair of startlingly luminous eyes stared out at him in shades of blue and green that reminded him of the ocean off the coast of Italy. Her full lips suggested she had a laugh tucked in the corner, and the tilt of her head revealed an impish slant to her character. Something else in her, something compelling and almost familiar made his heart trip all over itself.
No. He would never again make the blunder of allowing his attraction for a woman—especially an aristocratic woman—to cloud his judgment and rule his heart. He’d learned years ago never to dally with a woman of her class. The one and only time he’d made that mistake had nearly broken him.
Really, considering his mother’s history, he should have known better; the nobility had no place in their hearts for the working class. He knew it now, and he’d not soon forget.
“She was so happy back then,” Amesbury said in a hushed voice.
Connor removed his focus from the oddly compelling miniature. “Back then?”
Amesbury paused as if choosing his words. “The last few years were difficult for her. Her marriage was not … happy.”
Was it bad enough that she killed her husband?
That mischievous, lively, lovely girl in the painting could not have done such a heinous act. However, if she’d grown into a bitter woman, she might have. Time changed people. Hardship changed them more. What was the saying about hell hath no fury like a woman scorned…?
“She didn’t kill him.” Amesbury’s vehemence set his features into one belonging to a formidable foe, should they ever find themselves on opposing sides—which they might if Connor found evidence that Lady Hennessy was guilty.
After fixing her face in his memory, Connor handed back the miniature.
Amesbury gestured. “Keep it if it will help you find her.”
Tucking the miniature safely into a pocket, Connor vowed, “I’ll find her and deliver her safely to you.”
Amesbury clasped his hand. “My thanks.”
“Yes, thank you, Mr. Jackson,” Mrs. Amesbury echoed.
Connor inclined his head to them both and strode out to hunt for Grant and Christian’s sister, who might be a murderess. Despite his relationship the noble family, Connor would use every means at his disposal to deliver her to her family. He could only trust that the wheels of justice would turn on the upper crust as swiftly as it turned on the lower classes.
Also in the series:
About the author:
Multi-award-winning author of more than twenty best-selling Regency Historical Romances, Donna Hatch is a hopeful romantic and an adventurer at heart. Each book she writes is filled with wit and heart and plenty of swoon-worthy romance. Donna sings, plays the harp, and loves to ballroom dance. Her family, including six children and two cats, recently left their native Arizona for the Pacific coast of the US. No matter where they live, she and her husband of over twenty years are proof that there truly is a happily ever after.
– One winner will receive ebooks of the first four books in the Rogue Hearts series, The Stranger She Married, The Guise of a Gentleman, A Perfect Secret and The Suspect’s Daughter
– Four winners will each receive an ebook of the first book in the Rogue Hearts series, The Stranger She Married
– Open internationally
– Ends July 1, 2020